Rachel MacGregor counter-sues Colin Craig for defamation

Former Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig is being counter-sued for defamation by his former press secretary Rachel ...
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Former Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig is being counter-sued for defamation by his former press secretary Rachel MacGregor.

Former Conservative Party press secretary Rachel MacGregor says she has filed a defamation lawsuit against her ex-boss and former Conservative leader Colin Craig.

MacGregor counter-sued the former Conservative Party leader after learning he had taken legal action against her.

Craig filed defamation proceedings against her in November 2016 - which MacGregor said she was only alerted to by media last week.

She said in a statement on Tuesday that she had been advised to "file a document" in response to protect her legal position.

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"When media alerted me that Mr Craig had sued me I sought legal advice," she said.

"That advice was that I needed to file a document by today in order to protect my legal position.

"I will not be commenting further at this stage as the matter is before the court."

Last week MacGregor asked Craig to drop defamation proceedings against her in order to "get on with my life".

She said she believed Craig's claim against her was "an abuse of process".

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"Over the last year I have been dragged unwillingly into being a witness in two Court proceedings by Mr Craig and others. I have been required to give evidence that was both highly personal and highly distressing," she said.

"I would like to get on with my life."

MacGregor and Craig have been embroiled in court cases since MacGregor resigned two days before the 2014 election then filed a sexual harassment complaint against Craig. 

The pair reached a secret settlement on the matter, but the Human Rights Review Tribunal later ruled that Craig repeatedly breached their agreement by giving interviews about her.

He was ordered to pay her $128,780 in damages plus costs - the highest sum the Human Rights Review Tribunal has awarded for emotional harm.

Craig also went on to take a series of defamation cases against those he accused of trying to damage his career by making further political mileage about his and MacGregor's relationship - he took on WhaleOil blogger Cameron Slater, Taxpayers Union founder Jordan Williams and former Conservative Party board member John Stringer.

In turn Williams and Slater counter sued by Craig.

Craig lost his case against Williams. Williams won his case against Craig. That case is now being appealed by Craig.

Craig and Slater argued their case in the High Court at Auckland just last month and the judge has yet to deliver his judgement. 

When contacted last week Craig said although he had originally filed defamation papers against MacGregor he had not pursued the matter, deciding instead to limit his fight to Williams, Slater and Stringer.

 

 

 - Stuff

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